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Is papaya healthy for pregnancy? Know if it can cause harm to the baby

It's safe to eat ripe papaya during pregnancy, but it's best to avoid semi-ripe or unripe papaya as they can cause health problems and harm the baby.

India TV Health Desk Edited By: India TV Health Desk New Delhi Published on: March 14, 2023 12:41 IST
Image Source : FREEPIK Is papaya healthy for pregnancy?

Eating a healthy diet is crucial during pregnancy, but there are certain foods that pregnant women should avoid or limit. Papaya is one such controversial food. It's safe for pregnant women to eat ripe papaya, but they should strictly avoid green or semi-ripe papaya because it contains a lot of latex. Studies have shown that this concentrated form of latex can cause uterine contractions. Unripe papaya also contains a component called papain which, combined with latex, can increase the risk of miscarriage or early labor. 

Papaya is sometimes used to induce labor, and it can be mistaken by the body for prostaglandins. This can lead to several complications.  Pregnant ladies are therefore advised to consult a doctor before adding ripe papaya to their diet. 

Papaya Health Benefits for Pregnant Women

Following are some of the health benefits of papaya for pregnant women:

  • Papayas, being rich in minerals and nutrients, enhance the mother’s and the child’s immunity and prevent infections.
  • Papayas help women counter nausea and morning sickness. 
  • If a mother doesn’t produce enough milk to breastfeed her child, having one serve of ripe papaya daily is advised.
  • Pregnant women often experience constipation and heartburn. Papaya can be helpful in relieving constipation and aiding digestion.
  • Papaya is a nutrient-rich fruit that contains potassium, vitamins A, B, C, and beta-carotene. These nutrients can promote the neurological growth and development of the fetus.
  • Eating papaya during pregnancy may help increase platelet count and restore it to a normal range if the mother contracts a viral illness.


1. Which other fruits are recommended for pregnant women?

Avocados, oranges, mango, and bananas are some fruits good for pregnant women.

2. Which fruits should pregnant women avoid?
Grapes and pineapple are two such fruits that pregnant ladies must avoid.

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